Biotium Inc.
  • Fremont, California, United States
Recent publications
The present invention relates to fluorescent dyes in general. The present invention provides a wide range of fluorescent dyes and kits containing the same, which are applicable for labeling a variety of biomolecules, cells and microorganisms. The present invention also provides various methods of using the fluorescent dyes for research and development, forensic identification, environmental studies, diagnosis, prognosis, and/or treatment of disease conditions.
Unlabelled: Latency-associated nuclear antigen (LANA), a multifunctional protein expressed by the Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) in latently infected cells, is required for stable maintenance of the viral episome. This is mediated by two interactions: LANA binds to specific sequences (LBS1 and LBS2) on viral DNA and also engages host histones, tethering the viral genome to host chromosomes in mitosis. LANA has also been suggested to affect host gene expression, but both the mechanism(s) and role of this dysregulation in KSHV biology remain unclear. Here, we have examined LANA interactions with host chromatin on a genome-wide scale using chromatin immunoprecipitation with high-throughput sequencing (ChIP-seq) and show that LANA predominantly targets human genes near their transcriptional start sites (TSSs). These host LANA-binding sites are generally found within transcriptionally active promoters and display striking overrepresentation of a consensus DNA sequence virtually identical to the LANA-binding site 1 (LBS1) motif in KSHV DNA. Comparison of the ChIP-seq profile with whole-transcriptome (high-throughput sequencing of RNA transcripts [RNA-seq]) data reveals that few of the genes that are differentially regulated in latent infection are occupied by LANA at their promoters. This suggests that direct LANA binding to promoters is not the prime determinant of altered host transcription in KSHV-infected cells. Most surprisingly, the association of LANA to both host and viral DNA is strongly disrupted during the lytic cycle of KSHV. This disruption can be prevented by the inhibition of viral DNA synthesis, suggesting the existence of novel and potent regulatory mechanisms linked to either viral DNA replication or late gene expression. Importance: Here, we employ complementary genome-wide analyses to evaluate the distribution of the highly abundant latency-associated nuclear antigen, LANA, on the host genome and its impact on host gene expression during KSHV latent infection. Combined, ChIP-seq and RNA-seq reveal that LANA accumulates at active gene promoters that harbor specific short DNA sequences that are highly reminiscent of its cognate binding sites in the virus genome. Unexpectedly, we found that such association does not lead to remodeling of global host transcription during latency. We also report for the first time that LANA's ability to bind host and viral chromatin is highly dynamic and is disrupted in cells undergoing an extensive lytic reactivation. This therefore suggests that the association of LANA to chromatin during a productive infection cycle is controlled by a new regulatory mechanism.
The present invention relates to fluorescent pyrene dyes in general. The present invention provides a wide range of fluorescent dyes and kits containing the same, which are applicable for labeling a variety of biomolecules, cells and microorganisms. The present invention also provides various methods of using the fluorescent dyes for research and development, forensic identification, environmental studies, diagnosis, prognosis, and/or treatment of disease conditions.
The present invention relates to dyes in general. The present invention provides a wide range of dyes and kits containing the same, which are applicable for labeling a variety of biomolecules such as nucleic acids, cells and microorganisms. The present invention also provides various methods of using the dyes for research and development, forensic identification, environmental studies, diagnosis, prognosis, and/or treatment of disease conditions.
Fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) is a powerful tool for studying macromolecular assemblies in vitro under near-physiological conditions. Here we present a new type of one-sample FRET (OS-FRET) method employing a novel, nonfluorescent methanethiosulfonate-linked acceptor that can be reversibly coupled to a target sulfhydryl residue via a disulfide bond. After the quenched donor emission is quantitated, the acceptor is removed by reduction, allowing measurement of unquenched donor emission in the same sample. Previous one-sample methods provide distinct advantages in specific FRET applications. The new OS-FRET method is a generalizable spectrochemical approach that can be applied to macromolecular systems lacking essential disulfide bonds and eliminates the potential systematic errors of some earlier one-sample methods. In addition, OS-FRET enables quantitative FRET measurements in virtually any fluorescence spectrometer or detection device. Compared to conventional multisample FRET methods, OS-FRET conserves sample, increases the precision of data, and shortens the time per measurement. The utility of the method is illustrated by its application to a protein complex of known structure formed by CheW and the P4-P5 fragment of CheA, both from Thermotoga maritima. The findings confirm the practicality and advantages of OS-FRET. Anticipated applications of OS-FRET include analysis of macromolecular structure, binding and conformational dynamics, and high-throughput screening for interactions and inhibitors.
Styryl dyes (also referred to as FM dyes) become highly fluorescent upon binding to membranes and are often used to study synaptic vesicle recycling in neurons. To date, however, no direct comparisons of the fluorescent properties, or time-resolved (millisecond) measurements of dye-membrane binding and unbinding reactions, for all members of this family of probes have been reported. Here, we compare the fluorescence intensities of each member of the FM dye family when bound to membranes. This analysis included SGC5, a new lipophilic fluorescent dye with a unique structure. Fluorescence intensities depended on the length of the lipophilic tail of each dye, with a rank order as follows: SGC5 > FM1-84 > FM1-43 > SynaptoGreen C3 > FM2-10/FM4-64/FM5-95. Stopped-flow measurements revealed that dye hydrophobicity determined the affinity and departitioning rates for dye-membrane interactions. All of the dyes dissociated from membranes on the millisecond timescale, which is orders of magnitude faster than the overall destaining rate (timescale of seconds) of these dyes from presynaptic boutons. Departitioning kinetics were faster at higher temperatures, but were unaffected by pH or cholesterol. The data reported here aid interpretation of dye-release kinetics from single synaptic vesicles, and indicate that these probes dissociate from membranes on more rapid timescales than previously appreciated.
Live-cell detection of intracellular enzyme activity requires that substrates are cell-permeable and that the generated products are easily detected and retained in cells. Our objective was to create a novel fluorogenic substrate that could be used for real-time detection of apoptosis in living cells. We have synthesized a highly cell-permeable caspase-3 substrate, DEVD-NucView488, by linking a fluorogenic DNA-binding dye to the caspase-3 recognition sequence that renders the dye nonfunctional. On substrate cleavage, the dye is released and becomes highly fluorescent on binding to DNA. DEVD-NucView488 detected caspase-3 activation within a live-cell population much earlier and with higher sensitivity compared with other apoptosis reagents that are currently available. Furthermore, cells incubated with DEVD-NucView488 exhibited no toxicity and normal apoptotic progression. DEVD-NucView488 is an ideal substrate for kinetic studies of caspase-3 activation because it detects caspase-3 activity in real-time and also efficiently labels DNA in nuclei of caspase-3-activated cells for real-time fluorescent visualization of apoptotic morphology. The strategy utilized in the design of this fluorogenic substrate can be applied in future endeavors to develop substrates for detecting real-time intracellular enzyme activity.
EvaGreen (EG) is a newly developed DNA-binding dye that has recently been used in quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR), post-PCR DNA melt curve analysis and several other applications. However, very little is known about the physicochemical properties of the dye and their relevance to the applications, particularly to qPCR and post PCR DNA melt curve analysis. In this paper, we characterized EG along with a widely used qPCR dye, SYBR Green I (SG), for their DNA-binding properties and stability, and compared their performance in qPCR under a variety of conditions. This study systematically compared the DNA binding profiles of the two dyes under different conditions and had these findings: a) EG had a lower binding affinity for both double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) and single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) than SG; b) EG showed no apparent preference for either GC- or AT-rich sequence while SG had a slight preference for AT-rich sequence; c) both dyes showed substantially lower affinity toward ssDNA than toward dsDNA and even lower affinity toward shorter ssDNA fragments except that this trend was more pronounced for EG. Our results also demonstrated that EG was stable both under PCR condition and during routine storage and handling. In the comparative qPCR study, both EG and SG exhibited PCR interference when used at high dye concentration, as evident from delayed Ct and/or nonspecific product formation. The problem worsened when the chain extension time was shortened or when the amplicon size was relatively long (>500 bp). However, qPCR using EG tolerated a significantly higher dye concentration, thus permitting a more robust PCR signal as well as a sharper and stronger DNA melt peak. These differences in qPCR performance between the two dyes are believed to be attributable to their differences in DNA binding profiles. These findings suggest that an ideal qPCR dye should possess several DNA-binding characteristics, including a "just right" affinity for dsDNA and low or no affinity for ssDNA and short DNA fragments. The favorable DNA-binding profile of EG, coupled with its good stability and instrument-compatibility, should make EG a promising dye for qPCR and related applications.
The differentiation between live and dead bacterial cells presents an important challenge in many microbiological applications. Due to the persistence of DNA in the environment after cells have lost viability, DNA-based detection methods cannot differentiate whether positive signals originate from live or dead bacterial targets. We present here a novel chemical, propidium monoazide (PMA), that (like propidium iodide) is highly selective in penetrating only into 'dead' bacterial cells with compromised membrane integrity but not into live cells with intact cell membranes/cell walls. Upon intercalation in the DNA of dead cells, the photo-inducible azide group allows PMA to be covalently cross-linked by exposure to bright light. This process renders the DNA insoluble and results in its loss during subsequent genomic DNA extraction. Subjecting a bacterial population comprised of both live and dead cells to PMA treatment thus results in selective removal of DNA from dead cells. We provide evidence that this chemical can be applied to a wide range of species across the bacterial kingdom presenting a major advantage over ethidium monoazide (EMA). The general application of EMA is hampered by the fact that the chemical can also penetrate live cells of some bacterial species. Transport pumps actively export EMA out of metabolically active cells, but the remaining EMA level can lead to substantial loss of DNA. The higher charge of PMA might be the reason for the higher impermeability through intact cell membranes, thus avoiding DNA loss.
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